I Sold My Soul to Amazon; Plus, Major 3 Gates News.

Here is a straightforward fact; Amazon is helping make my writing career through the huge success of 3 Gates of the Dead. I know there are a lot of people who beat the “anti-Amazon” drum with intense fervor. In truth, I used to be one of them until I realized the absolute hypocrisy of doing so.

I’m not saying Amazon doesn’t have some complicating things that go along with their business model. Others have written about it in a much more detailed and nuanced critique (Google it sometime). I still fully support indie bookstores and everything they mean to their individual communities. The way I see it, if you want to order something online or something digital, you go to Amazon. If you want to buy a print book, hold it in your hand, and be sacramental in your book buying (as I often am), you should go to your local indie bookstore.

Go here for a list of amazing local places. Please support the one nearest you as often as you can. Or talk to my friend Byron over at Hearts and Minds Bookstore.

Still, as a person trying to make their living as a writer, I (and other writers) must embrace Amazon and learn to work with them for own advantage. The truth of the matter is Amazon is a business. They have an eye on their bottom line. Like all companies, they contain a mixture of good and bad.

You know, like most people.

But, they’ve also been instrumental in the e-book revolution and gave a chance to many writers who could never get past literary gatekeepers. Some of that opportunity has resulted in pretty terrible books making it into the mainstream (Bigfoot Porn, really?), but it’s also resulted in some pretty great books having the chance to become successful.

The fact is, if you play your cards right, have a good agent, and a forward thinking publisher, you can utilize Amazon to your advantage.

The main success of 3 Gates, thus far, has come about through Amazon. Plus, I signed a deal with their audio book side, Audible.com, for a two book deal with an option for the 3rd. Now, they’ve taken their dedication to 3 Gates to the next level.

Here is the Big Announcement: 

Starting April 1st, the 3 Gates of the Dead digital edition will only be available on Amazon Kindle for the next year. (The print version will still be available everywhere books are sold.) In exchange for the e-book exclusive, Amazon will put their full marketing force behind the book. I don’t think I need to point out this is a huge, major deal. This came about through the hard work of my publisher, agent, and myself working with Amazon. The exact terms of the deal must remain secret, but let’s just say, it’s a square deal for everyone.

I’m an idealist at heart. Yet, sometimes, even an idealist must rethink some of their previous positions to fit a more nuanced version of life and see that previous ways of thinking might be incomplete or flat wrong.

So, I’m going to toast my business deal with Amazon while recognizing they want to make money off of me. Go to it with my blessing because I’d like the world to read and enjoy the 3 Gates series.

About Jonathan Ryan

Jonathan Ryan is a novelist, blogger and columnist. His novel, 3 Gates of the Dead, published by Open Road Media, is in bookstores everywhere. The sequel, Dark Bride, will be out early next year along with a powerful new Young Adult Trilogy, Revolution of the Wolf and a moving middle grade series, Ghost Bear.


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